Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.

As a high school senior, I have taken many standardized tests throughout my academic career. I prefer taking written or multiple-choice tests over a project and presentation. I have had success on tests in large part due to my preparation strategies and a commitment to my academics. My favorite test preparation practices are orally reciting a pattern and creating a mind map.

Orally reciting a pattern of the test is a unique way to remember the questions and answers. It involves speaking aloud the test questions and answers repeatedly for a few days leading up to the exam. Whether it is in the shower, talking a walk, or minutes before the exam, orally reciting the test material is my favorite method of test preparation. By speaking in the same pattern over and over, I am able to memorize entire tests and sometimes unconsciously say answers. This is extremely beneficial because even if I forget a small part of the test, I can recite the pattern in my head and remember the answer I am forgetting.

Another extremely important preparation practice I learned is creating a mind map. This preparation practice has worked well because I am a visual learner. Take, for example, a history test on the United States’ involvement in World War II. In my mind, I imagine I am part of the history. I am a commanding officer of Pearl Harbor, who has just been surprise attacked and must decide his armies next move. By becoming part of the story, I am able to picture the events in a much stronger way. This method has allowed me to remember specific details and keep an accurate timeline of the events.

I credit my 4.125 GPA in high school to these test preparation strategies. Not only do they help me excel on standardized tests, but I retain the information and test material for many years. There are some patterns I can still recite in my mind from freshman year! As I enter college and my eventual career, I will continue using these strategies on tests and in life to achieve success.

Joshua from Minnesota
High School Senior
Sauk Rapids-Rice High School